Saturday, January 16, 2016
Olivia's Post #3
The most surprising thing I found with my research was just how lacking of mental healthcare services that rural areas of North Carolina faced. It was so surprising to me that 28 counties in North Carolina did not have psychiatrists at all...and most of them were rural counties. Not only that, but even more rural counties lacked other types of psychiatrists. 95 counties(of North Carolina's 100) do not have an addiction psychiatrist, and 70 do not have a child psychiatrist.
Through my research I found that North Carolina is only able to meet 52% of its residents psychiatric needs! That's 48% of psychiatric needs not being met just due to a lack of psychiatrists. Learning all of this really solidified the importance of studying my topic in North Carolina. Learning all of this made me proud that North Carolina is taking important steps to provide all of their residents with psychiatric care via NC-STeP, my partner organization.
NC-STeP is currently live or has plans to be live in the majority of counties in North Carolina. Although psychiatrists won't reside in each of these counties, each county will have access to psychiatrists due to this. This incredible step can hopefully be translated to other forms of mental health care like therapy.
I am so excited to continue my experience and share the rest of what I have learned!